The Chronicler’s Solomon -- By: Raymond B. Dillard

Journal: Westminster Theological Journal
Volume: WTJ 43:2 (Spring 1981)
Article: The Chronicler’s Solomon
Author: Raymond B. Dillard

The Chronicler’s Solomon

Raymond B. Dillard

Any effort to elucidate the purpose and theology of the Chronicler must take into account the author’s distinctive handling of David and Solomon; an extensive scholarly literature has addressed this subject.1 The reigns of these two kings contrast sharply with the earlier record in Samuel/Kings; both accounts are set in a theological framework largely motivated by the needs of their respective audiences.

This study will survey the Chronicler’s distinctive handling of Solomon. The contours of his treatment appear in clear relief by examining both (1) his deletion of material from the Samuel/Kings account and (2) his use of models around which to shape his version of Solomon.

I. The Chronicler’s Omissions.

The deuteronomic2 historian had divided the reign of Solomon into two distinct periods, a time of blessing and obedience (1 Kgs 1–10) followed by apostasy and judgment in the form of the schism (1 Kgs 11–12). The concern with centralization of worship (Deut 12), particularly with the frequenting of the high places in Judah (1 Kgs 3:2–4; 12:31–33; 13:2; 13:32–33; 14:22–23; 22:43; 2 Kgs 12:3; 14:4; 15:4; 15:35; 16:4; 17:11; 17:29–41; 18:4; 18:22; 21:3; 23:5–20), becomes the canon also for condemning the actions of Solomon (1 Kgs 11:1–13). The era of blessing ends with attacks from adversaries (11:14–25) and rebellion from within (11:26–40); the schism itself is attributed to judgment for the sins of Solomon (You must have a subscription and be logged in to read the entire article.
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